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NHLA ALA Councilor’s Report from ALA Annual

ALA NH Chapter Councilor’s Report

ALA Annual 2016

Orlando, Florida

Amy Lappin, NH Chapter Councilor, 2016-18

Below are the highlights of Council Meetings from ALA Annual in Orlando. The most interesting debates and discussions revolved around two resolutions neither of which were ultimately voted on by Council. The first was a Resolution Concerning the Role of Chapters in the American Library Association. ALACD#40_Revised which came from a concern regarding communication between ALA and the Chapters (which are the state organizations, like us). After much discussion both in and out of Council sessions, the resolution was not brought to a vote. Incoming ALA President, Julie Todaro is forming a task force to examine how communications can be improved.

The second resolution, CD#45, which garnered much discussion throughout the conference was the Resolution on Gun Violence Affecting Libraries, Library Workers, and Library Patrons. Councilors spoke with great passion and emotion and a tremendous amount of respect while debating the resolution and several drafts were presented. The resolution was deferred for further research and discussion at the recommendation of the Intellectual Freedom Committee and the Committee on Legislation. I expect to see it back before Council at Midwinter 2017 in Atlanta.

Other actions taken by Council during Annual are below:

Council I:

Action Item:  Resolution Calling Upon Libraries to Build More Inclusive Communities.

ALA CD#44_62516_ACT.

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:

  1. urges libraries, librarians, and library workers to cultivate more inclusive communities by actively engaging their communities to defuse and deescalate a culture of violence based on hatred, discrimination, and bigotry; and
  2. stands with the LGBTQ*, Latinx, and diverse communities in confronting hate, discrimination, and bias while recognizing that they are impacted by violence at a much higher rate than the rest of society; and
  3. affirms that violence of this kind has no place in a civil society.

Motion passed. Voted yes.

Action Item: Resolution in Support of the Professional Cataloging Processes and Determinations of the Library of Congress ALA CD#39_6816_ACT

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:

  1. reaffirms its unequivocal support for the Library of Congress’ (Library) apolitical, professional determination to cease use prospectively of the subject headings “Illegal aliens” as articulated in its formal Resolution of January 12, 2016, and here also endorses the Library’s specific March 2016 proposal to retire both that term and the subject heading “Aliens” as it relates to non-extraterrestrials (March Proposals);2.
  2. emphasizes for the particular benefit of legislators that the purposes and uses of the Library’s subject headings have for more than a century been and remain entirely different from those animating Congress’ selection of subject headings in the United States Code (Code), and that the Library’s subject heading choices have no, and should have no, effect upon or relationship to the Code; and3.
  3. instructs the ALA Executive Director to convey the entirety of this Resolution to all germane Members of Congress, media of all forms, and such other parties both within and outside of govern­ment, including but not limited to other national non-profit organizations, as may assist the Library in preserving its venerable independent cataloging processes and in implementing its March Proposals.

Motion passed. Voted yes.

Council II:

Council II had a few housekeeping type resolutions from the Policy Monitoring Committee, the Committee on Organization, and the Constitution and Bylaws Committee.

The most interesting Action Item during Council II was the Resolution on the Restoration of the United Nations Repository System brought to Council by the International Relations Committee. CD #18.2 contained in the IRC Report.

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members, urges the UN to take steps to ensure the long-term equitable access to its information products by:

  1. reinstating the print depository library program for countries in areas of the world where the cost of Internet access is too high and not widely developed, so as to ensure transparent and ready access to UN information worldwide, and to continue to operate this program parallel to its online platforms, the United Nations iLibrary and the UN Digital Repository;
  1. providing the United Nations Depository Library Program with free access to the iLibrary in order to assure equitable access to all member countries of the United Nations, in the spirit other languages of the Principles Governing Depository Libraries;
  1. abiding by the recommendations made by depository libraries concerning the Consultation Paper, which were submitted to the UN Department of Public Information in June 2014 and published in the Executive Summary on the Analysis of Responses to the Consultation Paper on the Re-engineering of the UN Depository Libraries Programmes that Depository Libraries “receive a comprehensive and integrated service from DHL including distribution of relevant paid/unpaid publications and documents through the Digital Repository,” including implementing and adhering to a digital preservation policy and considering delaying the UN iLibrary in order to consult with corresponding stakeholders (i.e. Dag Hammersköld Library and United Nations Depository Libraries (UNDLs);
  1. encouraging full cooperation and communication among the United Nations Depository Library Program, UN Publications, and the UN Department of Public Information to assure the broadest possible access to UN documents and publications; and
  1. respecting existing UN policy, which states, “The United Nations Publications Board, on the advice of the Head Librarian of the Dag Hammarskjöld Library and taking into account the views of the Government concerned, designates depository libraries” (UN Doc: ST/AI/I89/Add.11/Rev.2), by appointing a working panel to study the issues, comprised of representatives from the Dag Hammarskjöld Library, the Publications Board, and Depository Libraries.

Motion passed. Voted yes.

Other reports of interest presented at Council II included the report of the Freedom to Read Foundation and the Report of the Conference Accessibility Task Force.

Council III:

The following Resolutions were voted on in Council III.

Resolution Concerning the Creation of the Deaf Culture Digital Library, CD#46_62516  was deferred to Midwinter 2017 to conduct research at the request of the ALA Committee on Legislation. I voted yes on the deferral.

The Committee on Legislation also brought a Resolution on the Immediate Ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled. CD#20.4 contained in the COL Report. It reads: Resolved, that the American Library Association, on behalf of its members and the public interest:

  1. calls upon the United States Senate and its committees of jurisdiction to immediately and concurrently take every procedural step possible to both ratify the Marrakesh Treaty and approve, with no amendment whatsoever, the Marrakesh Implementation Act and its associated legislative history text;
  2. urges the House of Representatives and its committee of jurisdiction to take any and all appropriate steps to immediately expedite consideration and passage of the Marrakesh Implementation Act and its associated legislative history text in unamended form; and
  3. encourages the President to publicly speak out, on all appropriate occasions, in support of the foregoing expedited Congressional processes and rapid ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty.

Motion passed. I voted yes.

Also in the COL Report:

A resolution of appreciation to congressional champions for support of school libraries and school librarians in the Every Student Succeeds Act.  CD#20.5

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA):

  1. commend Senators Lamar Alexander, Thad Cochran, Patty Murray, and Jack Reed and Representatives John Kline and Robert Scott for their recognition of the contributions of effective school library programs in the academic achievement of the nation’s students; and
  2. commend these School Library Champions for their efforts to include effective school library programs and school librarians in the language of the Every Student Succeeds Act.

Motion passed. I voted yes.

A resolution on equity for school libraries for the Department of Education making rules for ESSA.  CD#20.7

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:

  1. endorses the idea that every student have access to a well-funded, effective school library program;
  2. advocates for equitable access to effective school library programs with a certified school librarian, personalized learning environments, and equitable access to resources;
  3. works with ALA research committees to document the impact on students when minorities, low-income, and rural communities cut resources;
  4. advocates for equitable access to well-curated, high-quality, and accessible electronic resources;
  5. encourages state departments of education and coalition partners to establish and maintain funding of digital databases and shared resources to provide greater equity of access in all states and regions; and
  6. continues to encourage school librarians to apply for Innovative Approaches to Literacy grants.

The third resolve clause was amended to “works with ALA research committees to document the impact on students of a well-funded, effective school library program, particularly in minority and rural communities.”

Motion passed. I voted yes.

Also of note, ALA is doing much better financially than it was a few years ago. As of April, the association was about $400,000 ahead of projections.

ALA Membership is way up. As of May, overall membership was 3,500 over last year’s membership numbers. This is good news and comes primarily from division and roundtable growth. Most of the membership bump can be accounted for by a new United for Libraries group membership initiative.

ALA Midwinter 2017 will be in Atlanta, GA.


Respectfully Submitted,

Amy Lappin

NHLA ALA Councilor, 2016-2018

Deputy Director

Lebanon Public Libraries

Lebanon, NH


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